Ratan Naval Tata
28 December 1937
|Alma mater||Cornell University (BArch)|
|Title||Chairman, Tata Sons and Tata Group|
|Successor||Cyrus Mistry (2012) |
Natarajan Chandrasekaran (2017)
|Awards||Padma Vibhushan (2008)|
Padma Bhushan (2000)
Ratan Naval Tata (born 28 December 1937) is an Indian industrialist, philanthropist, and a former chairman of Tata Sons. He was also chairman of Tata Group, from 1990 to 2012, and again, as interim chairman, from October 2016 through February 2017, and continues to head its charitable trusts. He is the recipient of two of the highest civilian awards of India, the Padma Vibhushan (2008) and Padma Bhushan (2000). He is well known for his business ethics and philanthropy.
Born in 1937, he is a scion of the Tata family, and great-grandson of Jamsetji Tata, the founder of Tata Group. He is an alumnus of the Cornell University College of Architecture and Harvard Business School through the Advanced Management Program that he completed in 1975. He joined his company in 1961 when he used to work on the shop floor of Tata Steel, and was the apparent successor to J. R. D. Tata upon the latter's retirement in 1991. During Ratan Tata's chairmanship of 21 years, revenues grew over 40 times, and profit, over 50 times. He got Tata Tea to acquire Tetley, Tata Motors to acquire Jaguar Land Rover, and Tata Steel to acquire Corus, in an attempt to turn Tata from a largely India-centrist group into a global business.
Ratan Tata was born in Bombay, now Mumbai, on 28 December 1937, and is the son of Naval Tata (born in Surat). His biological maternal grandmother had been the sister of Hirabai Tata, wife of group founder Jamshedji Tata. His biological grandfather, Hormusji Tata, had belonged to the broader Tata family; Ratan therefore was a Tata by birth. Parents Naval and Sonoo separated in 1948 when Ratan was 10, and he was subsequently raised by the widow of Sir Ratanji Tata, his grandmother, Navajbai Tata, who formally adopted him through the J. N. Petit Parsi Orphanage. He has a half-brother, Noel Tata (from Naval Tata's second marriage with Simone Tata), with whom he was raised. His first language is Gujarati.
He studied at the Campion School, Mumbai till the 8th class, followed by Cathedral and John Connon School, Mumbai and at Bishop Cotton School in Shimla, and, in 1955, graduated from Riverdale Country School in New York City. In 1959, he then received a degree in Architecture from Cornell University, and in 1975, attended the seven-week Advanced Management Program of Harvard Business School — an institution which he has since endowed.
Promoted to management during the 1970s; he then endured trial by ordeal and was able to turn Group company National Radio and Electronics (NELCO) around, only to see it collapse during an economic slowdown. In 1991, J. R. D. Tata stepped down as chairman of Tata Sons, naming him his successor. When he settled down into the new role, he faced stiff resistance from many companies heads, some of whom had spent decades in their respective companies and rose to become very powerful and influential due to the freedom to operate under JRD Tata. He began replacing them by setting a retirement age, and then made individual companies report operationally to the group office and made each contribute some of their profit to build and use the Tata group brand. Innovation was given priority and younger talent was infused and given responsibilities. Under his stewardship, overlapping operations in group companies were streamlined into a synergised whole, with the salt-to-software group exiting unrelated businesses to take on globalisation.
During the 21 years he led the Tata Group, revenues grew over 40 times, and profit, over 50 times. Where sales of the group as a whole, overwhelmingly came from commodities when he took over, the majority sales came from brands when he exited. He boldly got Tata Tea to acquire Tetley, Tata Motors to acquire Jaguar Land Rover and Tata Steel to acquire Corus. All this turned Tata from a largely India-centric group into a global business, with over 65% revenues coming from operations and sales in over 100 countries. He conceptualised the Tata Nano car. In 2015, He explained in an interview for the Harvard Business School's Creating Emerging Markets project, the development of the Tata Nano was significant because it helped put cars at a price-point within reach of the average Indian consumer.
Ratan Tata resigned his executive powers in the Tata group on 28 December 2012, upon turning 75, appointing as his successor, Cyrus Mistry, the 44-year-old son of Pallonji Mistry of the Shapoorji Pallonji Group, the largest individual shareholder of the group and related by marriage. On 24 October 2016, Cyrus Mistry was removed as the chairman of Tata Sons and Ratan Tata was made interim chairman. The decision went through intense media scrutiny that made many scrutinize the root causes of the sudden removal, and the resultant crisis. A selection committee was formed to find a successor. The selection committee consisted of Mr. Tata, TVS Group head Venu Srinivasan, Amit Chandra of Bain Capital, former diplomat Ronen Sen and Lord Kumar Bhattacharya. All of them, except Mr. Bhattacharya, were on the board of Tata Sons. On 12 January 2017, Natarajan Chandrasekaran was named as the chairman of Tata Sons, a role he assumed in February 2017.
Tata invested personal savings in Snapdeal – one of India's leading e-commerce websites –and, in January 2016, Teabox, an online premium Indian Tea seller, and CashKaro.com, a discount coupons and cash-back website. He has made small investments in both early and late stage companies in India, such as INR 0.95 Cr in Ola Cabs. In April 2015, it was reported that Tata had acquired a stake in Chinese smartphone startup Xiaomi. In October 2015, he partnered with American Express, investing in Bitcoin venture Abra. In 2016, he invested in Nestaway an online portal to find fully furnished flats for bachelors which later acquired Zenify to start family rental segment and online pet care portal, Dogspot. Tata Motors rolled out the first batch of Tigor Electric Vehicles from its Sanand Plant in Gujarat, regarding which Ratan Tata said, "Tigor indicates a willingness to fast-forward India's electric dream. The government has set an ambitious target to have only electric cars by 2030."
Tata Sons vs. Cyrus Mistry
In one of the most dramatic developments in the recent past, the board of directors of Tata Group on 24 October 2016 voted for the removal of its chairman Cyrus Mistry with immediate effect and made Ratan Tata the interim chairman, and in February 2017, Mistry was removed as a director for Tata Sons. The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal(NCLAT) had decided in December 2019 that the removal of Cyrus Mistry as the Chairman of Tata Sons was illegal and that he should be reinstated. India's Supreme Court heard an appeal by the $111-billion conglomerate to quash the NCLAT order that directed the Tata group to rehire the man it fired as chairman. Ratan Tata is personally leading the charge in the case, and filed a separate petition challenging the ruling in the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court has stayed the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) order that allowed Cyrus Mistry to be reinstated as Tata Sons chairman in January 2020.
Tata is a supporter of education, medicine and rural development, and considered a leading philanthropist in India. Tata supported University of New South Wales Faculty of Engineering to develop capacitive deionization to provide improved water for challenged areas.
- Tata Education and Development Trust, a philanthropic affiliate of Tata Group, endowed a $28 million Tata Scholarship Fund that will allow Cornell University to provide financial aid to undergraduate students from India. The scholarship fund will support approximately 20 scholars at any given time and will ensure that the very best Indian students have access to Cornell, regardless of their financial circumstances. The scholarship will be awarded annually; recipients will receive the scholarship for the duration of their undergraduate study at Cornell.
- In 2010, Tata Group companies and Tata charities donated $50 million for the construction of an executive center at Harvard Business School (HBS). The executive center has been named Tata Hall, after Ratan Tata (AMP '75), chairman emeritus of Tata Sons. The total construction costs have been estimated at $100 million. Tata Hall is located in the northeast corner of the HBS campus, and is devoted to the Harvard Business School's mid-career Executive Education program. It is seven stories tall, and about 155,000 gross square feet. It houses approximately 180 bedrooms, in addition to academic and multi-purpose spaces.
- Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has given the largest ever donation by a company to Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) for a facility to research in cognitive systems and autonomous vehicles. TCS donated $35 million for this grand 48,000 square-foot building that is going to be called TCS Hall.
- In 2014, Tata Group endowed the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay and formed the Tata Center for Technology and Design (TCTD) to develop design and engineering principles suited to the needs of people and communities with limited resources. They gave ₹950 million to the institute which was the largest ever donation received in its history.
- Tata Group, under the leadership of Ratan Tata formed the MIT Tata Center of Technology and Design at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a mission to address the challenges of resource-constrained communities, with an initial focus on India.
Board memberships and affiliations
He was the interim chairman of Tata Sons. He continues to head the main two Tata trusts Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and Sir Ratan Tata Trust and their allied trusts, with a combined stake of 66% in Tata Sons, Tata group's holding company.
He has served in various capacities in organizations in India and abroad. He is a member of Prime Minister's 'Council on Trade and Industry' and the 'National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council'. He is on the jury panel of Pritzker Architecture Prize – considered to be one of the world's premier architecture prizes.
He is a director on the boards of Alcoa Inc., Mondelez International and Board of Governors of the East-West Center. He is also a member of the board of trustees of University of Southern California, Harvard Business School Board of Dean's Advisors, X Prize and Cornell University. He is a member on the board of International Advisory Council at Bocconi University
He is also a member of the Harvard Business School India Advisory Board (IAB) since 2006 and previously a member of the Harvard Business School Asia-Pacific Advisory Board (APAB) 2001–2006.
In October 2016, Tata Sons removed Cyrus Mistry as its chairman, nearly 4 years after he took over the reins of the over $100 billion conglomerate, Ratan Tata made a comeback, taking over the company's interim boss for 4 months. On 12 January 2017, Natarajan Chandrasekaran was named as the chairman of Tata Sons, a role he assumed in February 2017.
Honours and awards
Other notable awards include:
|2001||Honorary Doctor of Business Administration||Ohio State University|||
|2004||Medal of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay||Government of Uruguay|||
|2004||Honorary Doctor of Technology||Asian Institute of Technology.|||
|2005||International Distinguished Achievement Award||B'nai B'rith International|||
|2005||Honorary Doctor of Science||University of Warwick.|||
|2006||Honorary Doctor of Science||Indian Institute of Technology Madras|||
|2006||Responsible Capitalism Award||For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST)|||
|2007||Honorary Fellowship||The London School of Economics and Political Science|||
|2007||Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy||Carnegie Endowment for International Peace|||
|2008||Honorary Doctor of Law||University of Cambridge|||
|2008||Honorary Doctor of Science||Indian Institute of Technology Bombay|||
|2008||Honorary Doctor of Science||Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur|||
|2008||Honorary Citizen Award||Government of Singapore|||
|2008||Honorary Fellowship||The Institution of Engineering and Technology|||
|2008||Inspired Leadership Award||The Performance Theatre|||
|2009||Honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE)||United Kingdom|||
|2009||Life Time Contribution Award in Engineering for 2008||Indian National Academy of Engineering|||
|2009||Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic||Government of Italy|||
|2010||Honorary Doctor of Law||University of Cambridge|||
|2010||Hadrian Award||World Monuments Fund|||
|2010||Oslo Business for Peace award||Business for Peace Foundation|||
|2010||Legend in Leadership Award||Yale University|||
|2010||Honorary Doctor of Laws||Pepperdine University|||
|2010||Business for Peace Award||Business for Peace Foundation|||
|2010||Business Leader of the Year||The Asian Awards.|||
|2012||Honorary Fellow||The Royal Academy of Engineering|||
|2012||Doctor of Business honoris causa||University of New South Wales|||
|2012||Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun||Government of Japan|||
|2013||Foreign Associate||National Academy of Engineering|||
|2013||Transformational Leader of the Decade||Indian Affairs India Leadership Conclave 2013|||
|2013||Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Lifetime Achievement||Ernst & Young|||
|2013||Honorary Doctor of Business Practice||Carnegie Mellon University|||
|2014||Honorary Doctor of Business||Singapore Management University|||
|2014||Sayaji Ratna Award||Baroda Management Association|||
|2014||Honorary Knight Grand Cross of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (GBE)||United Kingdom Government|||
|2014||Honorary Doctor of Laws||York University, Canada|||
|2015||Honorary Doctor of Automotive Engineering||Clemson University|||
|2015||Sayaji Ratna Award||Baroda Management Association, Honoris Causa, HEC Paris|||
|2016||Commander of the Legion of Honour||Government of France|||
|2018||Honorary Doctorate||Swansea University|||
In 2011, Ratan Tata stated, "I came seriously close to getting married four times and each time I backed off in fear or for one reason or another."
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- "Ratan Tata is chairman emeritus of Tata Sons". The Times of India.
- Masani, Zareer (5 February 2015). "What makes the Tata empire tick?". The Independent (UK). Retrieved 30 April 2016.
- "List of Fellows — Royal Academy of Engineering". Raeng.org.uk. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
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- Hollar, Sherman. "Ratan Tata". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
- Langley, William (30 March 2008). "Ratan Tata rode the tiger economy and now he drives Jaguar". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- "Thank you, Mr Tata, for thinking of the common man!". Rediff.com. 1 January 2008.
- "Ratan Tata goes back to school". Times of India. 31 March 2009. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- Philip, Handler; Maddy, Handler (June 2009). "Ratan Tata '59: The Cornell Story".
- "QUAD Spring 2010". Issuu. Retrieved 12 March 2018.
- "Harvard Business School Receives $50 Million Gift from the Tata Trusts and Companies". Retrieved 6 November 2018.
- "Tata Hall Dedicated at HBS". 10 December 2013. Retrieved 6 November 2018.
- Majumdar, Shyamal (21 January 2015). "40 Years Ago... and Now: Ratan Tata increased dare quotient of Tata group". Business Standard. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
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- Christopher, Elizabeth; Deresky, Helen (2012). International Management: Managing Cultural Diversity (Second ed.). Pearson Australia. p. 457. ISBN 9781442539679. Retrieved 30 April 2016.
- "The Tata group: Out of India". The Economist. 3 March 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2016.
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- Goldstein, Andrea (January 2008). "The Internationalization of Indian Companies: The Case of Tata". Center for the Advanced Study of India, University of Pennsylvania. p. 36. Retrieved 30 April 2016.
- Mithas, S. 2015. Making the Elephant Dance: The Tata Way to Innovate, Transform and Globalize (Kindle version is available at https://www.amazon.in/dp/B012G9MSCA[permanent dead link]). New Delhi: Penguin Portfolio
- "Interview with Ratan Naval Tata". Creating Emerging Markets. Harvard Business School.
- "Cyrus P Mistry to succeed Ratan Tata". Retrieved 23 November 2011.
- "Ratan Tata, India's Corporate Czar, Retires With a $500 Billion Vision". Bloomberg. Retrieved 27 March 2013.
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- "Cyrus Mistry Replaced by Ratan Tata as Tata Sons chairman – The Economic Times". The Economic Times. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
- "Ratan Tata invests in TeaBox, comes on board as advisor". Business Standard. 27 January 2016.
- "Ratan Tata invests undisclosed amount in online cashback venture CashKaro.com". Economic Times. 19 January 2016.
- "Decoding Ratan Tata's start-up investments". Livemint. 2 October 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- Flannery, Russell (2 May 2015). "Ratan Tata Investment Underscores How Xiaomi Defies Odds". Forbes. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
- Shin, Laura (22 October 2015). "American Express Invests In Bitcoin Venture, Abra, Which Announces U.S., Philippines Launch". Forbes. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
- India, Press Trust of (28 February 2016). "Ratan Tata invests in home rental start-up NestAway". Business Standard. Retrieved 28 February 2016.
- "Ratan Tata invests in pet care portal". The Hindu. 4 January 2016. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
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- "Why Ratan Tata's Tigor rollout is a revolutionary statement". The Economic Times. 9 December 2017. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
- "Cyrus Mistry back in the waiting line as Supreme Court stays order allowing him to be reinstated as Tata Sons Chairman". Business Insider. Retrieved 24 January 2020.
- "Ratan Tata fights to save legacy after Cyrus Mistry court ruling". The Economic Times. 6 January 2020. Retrieved 24 January 2020.
- ScoopWhoop (13 May 2015). "You'll Respect These Indians More After You Find Out How Much They Donate To Charity".
- "Tata Trusts". www.tatatrusts.org.
- "Tata Trusts: A role model for philanthropy". The Week. Retrieved 15 October 2020.
- "UNSW looks to solar-powered desalination to help bust droughts josh". RenewEconomy. 18 April 2019.
- Duong, Cecilia (17 April 2019). "Solar powered desalination offers hope of a global shift in agriculture". UNSW Newsroom.
- "Tata Scholarship | Undergraduate Admissions". admissions.cornell.edu.
- "Harvard Business School Receives $50 Million Gift from the Tata Trusts and Companies". Retrieved 14 January 2017.
- "HBS Tops Off Tata Hall". Retrieved 14 January 2017.
- "A campus built on philanthropy – Tata Hall". Harvard Business School -About us. Retrieved 19 June 2016.
- University, Carnegie Mellon (1 April 2017). "Carnegie Mellon and Tata Consultancy Services Break Ground on Global Research Facility in the U.S. – News – Carnegie Mellon University". Retrieved 29 November 2018.
- "Tata Centre for Technology and Design". www.tatacentre.iitb.ac.in. Retrieved 2 May 2019.
- "IIT-Bombay receives largest ever donation for research and development – Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 2 May 2019.
- "Tata Center for Technology + Design". MIT Innovation Initiative.
- "MIT Tata Center – Bringing rich technical talent and experience to bear on the persistent and emerging challenges of the developing world".
- "The Pritzker Architecture Prize Adds Two New Jurors: Kristin Feireiss of Germany and Ratan N. Tata of India" (PDF). Pritzkerprize.com. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Ratan Tata nominated to the board of Mondelez International". The Times of India. 3 April 2013.
- Ray (1 June 2008). "Space Prizes: Ratan Tata and Michael Boustridge Join X PRIZE Foundation Board of Directors". Spaceprizes.blogspot.in. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 4 August 2016. Retrieved 21 June 2016.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "Ratan N. Tata Joins Carnegie Board of Trustees". Washington, DC: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. 13 September 2013. Retrieved 28 November 2018.
- Sharma, Samidha (10 February 2015). "Ratan Tata Turns Advisor to VC Fund". The Times of India. Retrieved 28 November 2018.
- "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
- "Honorary Degree — University Awards & Recognition — The Ohio State University". Osu.edu. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
-  Archived 20 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine
- "Asian Institute of Technology confers doctorate on Ratan Tata". Asian Institute of Technology. March 2008. Archived from the original on 30 May 2012.
- "B'Nai B'Rith International : Past Award Honorees" (PDF). Bnaibrith.org. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "University of Warwick confers Honorary Doctor of Science on Ratan Tata". London School of Economics. March 2005.
- "Young engineers should stay back to serve the nation, says Ratan Tata — TAMIL NADU". The Hindu. 2 July 2006. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Ratan Tata wins responsible capitalism award | Business Standard News". Business-standard.com. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Ratan Tata becomes an LSE honorary fellow – 2007 – News archive — News — News and media — Home". Lse.ac.uk. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Carnegie Medal for Philanthropy on Ratan Tata". Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. March 2007. Archived from the original on 8 October 2011.
- "University of Cambridge confers doctorate on Ratan Tata". University of Cambridge. March 2008.
- "Ratan Tata gets smarter by a degree". Mumbai Mirror. August 2008. Archived from the original on 11 April 2013.
- "IIT Kharagpur confers doctorate on Ratan Tata". Economic Times. March 2008.
- "Singapore confers honorary citizenship on Ratan Tata". India Today. Indo-Asian News Service. 29 August 2008. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015.
- "Singapore Confers Prestigious Honorary Citizen Award on Mr Ratan N. Tata". www.mom.gov.sg. 2 August 2008.
- "IET Honorary Fellows". The IET. 2 October 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "The award". The Performance Theatre. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "GBE: Ratan Tata receives one of UK's top civilian honours". The Economic Times. 5 May 2014. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
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- "Presidenza Del Consiglio Dei Ministri : Collocati A Riposo (Art: 7)" (PDF). Governo.it. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Honorary degree 2010 nominations announced | University of Cambridge". Cam.ac.uk. 1 March 2010. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "2010 Hadrian Award Gala | World Monuments Fund". Wmf.org. 1 October 2010. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
-  Archived 15 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine
- "Yale Chief Executive Leadership Institute to Honor Tata Sons Chairman Ratan Tata with "Legend in Leadership Award"". Yale University. September 2010.
- "Pepperdine Confers Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree on Ratan N. Tata". Pepperdine University. September 2010. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011.
- "Seven secure Oslo Business for Peace Awards for 2010 | ICC — International Chamber of Commerce". Iccwbo.org. Archived from the original on 9 January 2016. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Winners of the Asian Awards 2010". Times of India. October 2010.
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- "Conferment of Japanese Decoration on Mr. Ratan N. Tata, Chairman of Tata Group". Embassy of Japan in India. 29 April 2012. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
- "National Academy of Engineering Elects 69 Members And 11 Foreign Associates". The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering & Medicine. 7 February 2013.
- "Dr. Mukesh Batra, Dr. Mukesh Hariawala, Dilip Surana of Microlabs, Upinder Zutshi of Infinite Computers, Dr. Ravindranath of Global Hospitals, Ratan Tata, Priyanka Chopra Among Others Declared Winners".
- "EY honors Ratan Tata with life time achievement award". Ernst & Young. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 6 August 2015.
- "Keynote & Honorees-Commencement Weekend — Carnegie Mellon University". Cmu.edu. Archived from the original on 2 December 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Mr Ratan Tata receives honorary doctorate from SMU | News | Singapore Management University". SMU. 1 March 2014. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "BMA to confer Sayaji Ratna Award on Ratan Tata". The Times of India. 6 April 2014. Retrieved 21 August 2014.
- "Touched for being awarded GBE by UK: Ratan Tata | business". Hindustan Times. 1 April 2014. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Sir James Bevan presents GBE (Knight Grand Cross) to Ratan Tata — News articles". GOV.UK. 5 May 2014. Retrieved 7 October 2015.
- "Ratan Tata gets honorary doctorate from York University of Canada". IANS. news.biharprabha.com. Retrieved 22 June 2014.
- "2015 SC Automotive Summit & SC Auto Week Agenda" (PDF). Myscma.com. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "HEC Paris | Ratan N. Tata receives honoris causa degree from HEC Paris". Hec.edu. 2 April 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
- "Highest French civilian distinction, Commandeur de la Légion d'Honneur conferred on Shri Ratan Tata". France in India: French Embassy in New Delhi. 18 March 2016. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
- "Swansea University Set for New Partnerships in India". Business News Wales. 3 October 2018.
- "Tata Emeritus Chairman Ratan Tata awarded Honorary Doctorate". www-2018.swansea.ac.uk.
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